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UNB gathers support for 116 students affected by travel bans

UNB is waiving fees, ensuring residence, and assisting in transfers from other universities to help students affected by US travel ban.

This ban was supposed to come into operation on March 16 and targets citizens from Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen and Syria.

Three days before the public announcement of this second ban, the VP academic of UNB Fredericton, George MacLean, announced that UNB would support students from those selected nationalities.

“It is a tremendously unfortunate approach taken by the United States government, which have let a lot of students in a difficult situation,” he said. “Our response to this is that we and other universities can help by providing opportunities for those who may wish to study outside their own country.”

UNB will waive fees in the application to the programs and in deposits to confirm residence as well as helping in any students’ transferences from other institutions in the United States and guaranteeing residence space for students.

“We are working with Citizenship and Immigration Canada, and we can offer some services for students working with them: we have counselling services, advisors’ services, we have specialists in residence life and student advisor offices, and global learning and engagement that is working with us to provide assistance to students,” he said.

However, just a few hours before the ban started, a Hawaiian judge canceled the ban.
Kiana Mozaffari is a fourth-year student from the faculty of science.

“It kind of gives me hope but at the same time, I come from a country where things are unstable so I feel like anything could happen,” Mozaffari said.
Mozaffari, a Canadian citizen, is a originally from Iran.

“A lot of people that were in the States, either studying or not, were scared to leave because they were worried they couldn’t come back,” she said.

Some of Mozaffari’s friends in Iran are not allowed to study in the United States, even after being accepted to an institution.

“It’s scary but at the same time, mostly, I am confused because I don’t get it,” she said.
“We value the diversity as we always have and that diversity is part of why we are the university we are today, and I think it reflects the culture we want to project as a university and a university that is beyond its borders,” said MacLean.

“I would thank UNB for deciding to take action, I feel like this is the only university in Canada who have done this and doing it so quickly but I do wish they would advertise it a little bit more to international students and not just an email,” Kiana said.

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